As much as I disdain the entertainment industry’s self-congratulatory
selfies awards ceremonies, I do hope that 12 Years a Slave mops up the competition, if only to savor the right-wing freak out that is sure to follow.
For an serious and intelligent discussion of the movie and its historical accuracy, go to TWiB’s new Historical Blackness series for 58 minutes of enlightenment. (Warning: It may deter you from wanting to watch the movie.)
And so it begins.
If I remember correctly, I believe that the Czar once invaded the Ottoman empire with a troop of Hassocks.
One wonders whether, had Republicans not decided to rally the forces of hate with anti-gay legislation in the years of President George the Worst (you know, the President they don’t talk about), would they be losing case after case in the courts today?
Inquiring minds want to know.
Gratuitous hate for political gain can collect its own gratuity.
I just got the email that my new laptop is ready to be shipped. Extra bonus fact: Microsoft has never been near it. It’s Linux out of the box.
I’m retiring the oldest machine (it’s starting to lag under the demands I place on it, particularly photo editing, as it only has a gig of RAM), putting Mageia on it, and giving it to Second Son, who is currently computerless except for his phone.
Who would have envisioned 20 years ago that a house would have more than one computer? And today I have two on this desk. (KVM switches are your friend.)
If it has turkey instead of corned beef, it may be a thing, but it’s not a Reuben.
You won’t find me at that dive.
I’ll be at Elias, where a “Philly cheese steak” is a cheese steak and a gyro is a gyro.
My bank does not endear itself to me by displaying “Happy Birthday” on the ATM when I insert my card.
Quite the opposiite . . . .
Virginia mandates a seachange (follow the link for details).
The power of grassroots lobbying was on vivid display Thursday as Virginia lawmakers, injecting themselves into an emotional international dispute, took on the role of geographers, cartographers and content providers for school textbooks.
As hundreds of Korean-Americans watched intently, the House of Delegates passed legislation mandating that any new textbooks approved by the state Board of Education, when referring to the Sea of Japan, must note that it is also referred to as the East Sea.
I don’t really have an opinion about this.
Korean-Americans clearly feel very strongly and I do not. Wikipedia has a long article about the dispute over the name; the dispute itself seems fairly recent, though the names in question are ancient. I’m used to the term, “Sea of Japan,” because, well, it’s what I’m used to, but that’s not a reason.
In the larger picture, though, it seems to me that, if Texas can subvert the nation’s textbooks by mandating what is, ultimately, bullshit, I cannot criticize Virginia for recognizing a legitimate difference of opinion.
I have recently been reading a lot of Japanese history, because something–I forget what–got me interested in unlearning Western stereotypes and learning about Japan, which has a long, rich, and complex story.
I’m inclined towards “Sea of Japan,” but I think that’s because of the reading I’ve been doing and of what I’m used to.
Maybe next I should bone up on the history of Korea.
When Pat Robertson thinks you are a joke, does that mean you are a joke squared?
When my parents drove us to Richmond via the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel when I was a young ‘un, we would sometimes see her in port at the Norfolk Naval Base.
She has been in the mothball fleet at the Philadelphia Naval Base for some time.
The USS Forrestal is slated to begin its final voyage from Philadelphia to Texas at 5 a.m. Tuesday.
The Navy offered her for use as a museum or memorial, but there were no viable offers.
I’ll read about it tomorrow. That’s what newspapers are for.
In the meantime, I wish for the end of inane acronyms like POTUS and FLOTUS and SOTU.
A pox on the reporters and bloggers who think such constructions are cutesy-wutesy. They should STFU.
In other news, the snow in the street is up to the level of the top of the curb, indicating that five or six inches have already fallen, and it looks to keep up all night. Looks like a snow day tomorrow. See some pictures here.
One of the nice things about where I live is that I won’t have to shovel snow!
I have always considered “Cornhole” to be a most unfortunate name for a game.
What Chauncey Devega said.
Right-wingers say mean, nasty, (and, unlike in this case) false and perfidious things all day, every day. Rather than apologize, they do it again, harder, harder. It’s how they roll.
Why settle for one standard, when you can have two?
We went to see The Hobbit, Part 2, last weekend.
It is hardly canonical; in turning one slim book into three fat movies, Peter Jackson dumped a lot of stuff into the film that is not in the original. With one exception (an implied romance between an elf and dwarf? I think not!), it is in the spirit, if not the letter, of Tolkien.
If you are looking for a faithful adaptation of the book, don’t bother seeing the film. If you want a fun three-hour non-stop ride, see it today.
And the scenes of the New Zealand countryside make you want to book an airline ticket to the southern hemisphere as soon as you leave the theatre.
In case you wondered what it is like to be overwhelmed by Christmas–not in “to do list” terms, but in cultural terms, to be an outsider–the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel’s Avrum Link can explain it to you.
I urge you to read it.
We have been listening to Christmas music, not every day, but a lot on weekends; we prefer internet streams that feature traditional stuff, such as Bing Crosby, Dean Martin, Rosemary Clooney, Burl Ives, and the like, the stuff we listened to as kids.
As I listened to a recording of Bing Crosby singing the Lord’s prayer, particularly the bit about
Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive the trespasses of others
I found myself thinking of those who mindlessly mouth those words every Sunday, then leave their churches and spend the rest of the week forgiving no one.
Do they ever wonder whether their prayer will be answered, that they will be forgiven in the same manner as they forgive others?
When I was a young ‘un, back in the olden days, one never heard of buildings having mold problems that made persons ill.
Now, mold is closing schools and forcing folks to leave their homes.
I’m puzzled. What’s different?
Were mold infestations not recognized back then in those Dark Ages, are effete modern persons more susceptible to the effects of mold, has mold mutated into a more vicious form (even though we know that evolution is only a theory because Genesis), or do “climate control” systems that result in windows’ being closed year round make buildings or the persons in them more susceptible to infection?
There is a reason.
Inquiring minds want to know.
No, not that cable news.
Friday, I ran out of windshield washer fluid in my truck. When I pulled on the hood release to refill the reservoir, there was a “clunk” and the hood did not. Release, that is.
Yesterday morning, we took the vehicle to my mechanic, who has taken excellent care of it since I moved to these parts. He fixes what’s broke, doesn’t fix what’s not broke, and stands behind his work. He doesn’t just replace; he repairs.
He warned us that, if a part were needed, it might have to come from a dealer and, because the repair is so infrequent, the part might not be in stock. I was prepared for him to have the vehicle for a couple of days, if necessary (I certainly did not want to drive it without being able to open the hood).
We dropped it off and had barely been back long enough for me to squeeze off a couple of drive-by blog posts when the mechanic called.
Once he got the hood open, he determined that nothing was broken; he lubricated the cable, and the release worked just fine.
When I asked him how much (I don’t mind paying for knowledge and expertise) he said, “No charge. It was barely in the bay for 10 minutes.”
I can recommend Bucky’s on Witchduck Road half a mile south of Independence most whole-heartedly. Bucky’s is competent, honest, and thorough.
I’ve seen many abusive relationships in my time.
There are far more of them than most persons imagine.
This news item just screams “abusive relationship.”
This has been building for some time.
[RANT MODE ON]
What most annoys me about my fellow lefties are the purists–the folks who, if you don’t fight to the death for every jot and tittle of whatever their pet causes may be, turn their backs on you and desert the fight. These are the folks who vote for glibertarians as “protest votes,” because “the two parties are ‘indistinguishable.’”
They are, ultimately, deserters with temper-tantrums.
Do they still think that, if Al Gore had won in 2000, nothing would have been different?
Are they really so clueless?
Purists don’t get stuff done, even as they equate failure with virtue. They remind me of the “student radicals” of my youth, who used to fantasize about American “workers and peasants” uniting, without realizing that the workers hated them (remember the “hard hats“?) and the peasants did not think of themselves as “peasants.”
Purists need to realize that there is a real world–an untidy, un-pretty, sloppy real world–and live in it.
I’m probably about as leftie as you can get and, were I a purist, I would not vote for most of the candidates that I have voted for the past few years. But, honest to Pete, I live in Virginia. I have to take what I can get. And I do so quite happily, because I try to live in the real world.
As my two or three regular readers, as well as my occasional listeners at HPR, know, I am a mystery buff.
I recently stumbled over a great site about mystery stories. If you are also a mystery buff, you must visit “Looking for a Mystery.”
I was led there by ManyBooks.net, a most excellent site for free ebooks.
I discovered it looking for mystery ebooks to read on my Zareason tablet, which does indeed absolutely rock. If you are interested in a tablet, but don’t want to sell your soul to Apple or your cellphone company, check out the ZaTab. It’s Android, so you still sell part of your soul to Google, but you can keep the rest.
Reg Henry counsels selfie-restraint. A nugget:
Full disclosure on selfies: While I have not taken a photograph of myself on a cellphone, being sufficiently quaint to think that their main purpose is to make calls, the younger me did squeeze into those little photography booths provided in malls for boys and girls to take a strip of photos of themselves while making funny faces.
But that wasn’t about the photography or the egotism; it was about the squeezing. Not the same thing at all.
Do read the rest.
On the rare times that I see myself in a web cam, cell phone, or tablet pointed at my face, I think, “What a stupid looking pose. Don’t. Just don’t.”
And I listen to me.